Limited funds available delay geothermal development at Menengai
Limited availability of funds have delayed development of geothermal projects by GDC and independent power producers (IPPs) that are to build geothermal plants with a combined power generation capacity of 105 MW in phase 1 of development at Menengai.
The acting director general of Kenya’s Energy Regulatory Commission, Pavel Oimeke, reports that delays in licensing, financial closure and technical hitches have contributed to the delay of geothermal power development by Geothermal Development Company (GDC).
Due to limited funds development activities in Menengai will take longer. GDC continues to look for support from the government, which it expects to get before the end of the year, and the company will be able to make good progress and development can continue before the end of this year.
GDC has contracted three IPPs to build geothermal power plants with a capacity of each 35 MW, or 105 MW in total in the first phase of the Menengai development.
GDC is undertaking geothermal development in four phases, each with an approximate 100MW of capacity. The estimated potential of the Menengai Geothermal Project is 1,600MW.
Phase one of the project commenced in February, 2011. GDC has seven deep drilling rigs that are used for drilling geothermal wells. So far, GDC has realized 160MW of steam at the well head.
Initially the plants were to start operation by December this year.
Source: The Star